Mum's 'absolutely terrifying' discovery inside pet shop birdcage

Josh Dutton
·News Reporter

A mum is furious after making a horrifying discovery in a birdcage she purchased from a southwest Sydney pet shop.

The woman took her children, aged four and one, to Macarthur Pets and Reptile Shop at Gregory Hills on Saturday morning.

She told Yahoo News Australia while they were at the store they decided to buy a parrot and a cage. The cage came disassembled.

But when the mum began piecing together the enclosure at home she realised she had a “completely unwanted guest” which had latched onto the cage parts.

A Sydney mum purchased a parrot (pictured) and an unassembled bird cage for it (also pictured) from Macarthur Pet and Reptile Shop on Saturday.
A mum purchased this bird (left) and an unassembled bird cage (right) from Macarthur Pet and Reptile Shop on Saturday. Source: Supplied

“I was shocked to find a snake rearing up and lunging at me and my kids,” she said.

“As it was brown in colour and browns are common in our area, I was immediately concerned that it was venomous.

“I had no idea if it was poisonous or not and if my children were in immediate danger.”

The woman determined the snake was a caramel coastal python, which aren’t venomous.

It retreated into some nearby packaging as she tried to catch it. She then placed the serpent into a Tupperware container and took it back to the store.

The store’s manager Lani Welling told Yahoo News Australia staff apologised to the mum.

The caramel coastal python wrapped up inside plastic, clear wrapping. It had been hiding in the unassembled cage parts.
The snake after it retreated into some packaging. Source: Supplied

Ms Welling added the reptile supervisor wasn’t in on Saturday but found out after calling her a hatchling had somehow escaped from one of its enclosures a week earlier.

“I understand it would have been absolutely terrifying for her but we’re not talking about a massive snake,” she said.

“We don’t even have a licence for venomous snakes. We’re not licenced to handle any animals which would put a person in danger.

“In fact, when that snake was returned it bit my son on the hand and he didn’t even bleed.”

Ms Welling said Macarthur Pets and Reptile Shop is “very adamant” about the welfare of its animals. Staff are still puzzled as to how the snake got out.

The mum was given a $50 store credit but she’s still angry about what occurred.

She claims she didn’t receive an apology and her concerns were “downplayed”.

The caramel coastal python returned to Macarthur Pets and Reptile Shop.
The snake back at the pet shop after it was returned by the mum. Source: Supplied/ Lani Welling

“I didn’t want any compensation but once my daughter’s safety was so blatantly disregarded, that’s when I got angry,” she said.

“No fury is akin to the fury a mother has when the safety of her children comes into play.”

She added the experience “could have been traumatic” for her kids.

Snakes often find ways to surprise and shock people.

Earlier this week, a Brisbane family were shocked to find a snake in their baby’s cot.

A man visiting a friend was also left shocked when video captured him being bitten on the face by a snake as he walked towards the front door.

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